Monday, March 30, 2009

The Story of My Life..

Or, how to make anything more complicated than it needs to be.

That does seem to be a continuing theme that I see over and over with any project!

But with that said... how about a tutorial?? Let me see if I can't make you wish you never asked.

What? You didn't ask? Well, I know your shy and afraid that I wouldn't be willing to share my secret most complicated way of doing something, but I feel it is the right thing to do, and then you would know what it is like to be me and there would be no doubt as to why I am always a little confused and shall we say distracted???

I don't know what it is about these feed sacks, but something about them just makes me happy!! I love everything about them. The colors are pure and bright. I love the graphics on the bag, I love the size, the fact that they are something that if I don't make them into a tote/bag, at best they will be used as garbage sacks and then tossed away with the trash. Someone asked me when I was showing them the bag, if I drew the image??
(They couldn't figure out what I was so excited about.)

I guess I'm not really sure either, but maybe the whole recycle, reuse, repurpose idea at it's best? It is a modern day take on the flour sacks of our ancestors? A reusable bag made from a "throw away" item? Repurposed??? Well, does it really matter?
Here I go making it too complicated, (it might just be that I like it.)

Here we have a bag dressed up with dingle ball trim.

A horse feed sack, that has a gathered ruffle trim, which coordinates with the inside of the handle.

A large red rickrack trim, and then further embellished with a vintage flower and ribbon tied to the handle.

This hen has a bright pink studded crown.
So help me here people lets all get a feed sack and make a bag!

The other reason for the tutorial is... They take way too long for me to make and if we want to recycle most effectively I'm going to need some help, reusing all the left over feed sacks in America.

Warning here... These are so cute that you might find yourself at the farm store looking at all the great bags, contemplating buying pigs, cows, turkeys, game birds, whatever just so you can have a different feed sack....
This might have to be part one of a two part tutorial because I have a way of making things much more complicated than it needs to be...
So with that, let the fun begin!!!
Pick your favorite sack.

Trim the ends straight.

Here is where you get to decide how big you want you bag to be...
(I'm thinking you might want to go as big as possible and you will see why later..)

I cut off at the color stripe or wherever there is a natural break in the design, from the bottom of the sack. I wanted to make these with the straps connected to the bag as one piece, instead of sewn on. My thought was it would be stronger and I just liked the way it made it look more like it was a feed sack...

So you cut the middle out and leave the edges where the fold is on the side for the handles.

Then you cut a piece out of the middle of the strap, so you can lay it over itself and sew it back together... I hope that is clear??? It will make more sense when you get to that part.

Turn the sack inside out and clean it...

Stitch the bottom a few times so it is strong and use a short stitch. Then turn the bag so you can make a point or triangle, and stitch.

The bag will have a bottom
(that should make sense, refer to the picture... lets call that a triangle.) You might want to make it a little straighter than I did, or keep trying until you do ...
Here is where I was glad I had made it big, because I sewed the bottom seam where the sides were facing each other instead of the front to the back... Remember we are using little stitches? There is no ripping out, so....

Now I cut the bottom off and the triangles, straightened the sack again... was I ever glad I had a big bag because now it was going to be 3 inches smaller... I then put the front to the back and sewed it again and redid the triangles that make a bottom... (I told you this was harder than it needed to be.)
Can you see in the picture below where I cut a piece out of the middle of the strap so I could sew it to itself?
Why I did this instead of just cutting from both sides??
Maybe because it makes it easier to pleat?? I don't think it really matters, but what I knew for certain was I did not want to turn this handle inside out not to mention it was connected to the bag. I wanted it to be double thick so I sewed it together on both sides and then, to make it more complicated and time consuming, I used biased tape on the edges. Then naturally I couldn't leave well enough alone so I sewed rickrack on top of the bias tape so it would be oh so cute!!
This will be fairly obvious when you get to this spot, and frankly every time it is different?? I like the strap to be long so it will go over your neck as a shoulder bag, I don't want it to be very wide, but I like it better double thick. I just pieced it together with parts from the sack that I cut off in the beginning.
I think the clothes pins work better than straight pins, the material is a little slippery... It is also much different than sewing cloth because it doesn't fold like cloth, but I just let it kinda do what it wants and not "tame" it too much... I use the natural creases and folds as much as I can.

See the pleats? You can kind of decide how you like yours at this point, it can be trimmed and fiddled with until you like it, (you might end up with a wallet...)

Oddly enough I ended up with the strap being connected to the bag on the inside instead of the outside as I would have preferred??? That is why I made the little flaps on the end of the strap.
I think it is fun to just go for it and see what happens.

Now for the fun part... Which trim shall we use on the front? Fringe? Dingle balls, large rickrack? Red or black? Or white? How about the red and black with silver???

Enough for now! If you make a feed sack bag/tote let me know. Send a picture and I will post it or a link to your blog and we will all come see.
And yes I know, I could have just cut off the top turned it over and used grommets to weave rope for a handle, which is very cute, but that just wasn't complicated enough!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Just a Little Side Note

I think some of you have the idea that I am with this sweet baby girl.

But actually I am getting these photo's from her family's dropshots.
There are actually 1835 miles between us...

Looks as though Miss Addie is taking care of her new sister
Apparently Delilah is happy with the arrangements.

But so tired...

Needless to say I am ever so anxious to get my turn, but as we don't have plans for a trip to Michigan, I will have to wait until June when they come to Oregon for a visit.

I do have plans for a road trip next week.

We are take Dumbo (the rv) on an outing!

I am heading to Washington State University, for Mom's weekend to be part of...

15th Annual Antique Show and Sale

2:00–9:00 p.m. • Gladish Gym,

115 NW State St. Pullman
$2.00 admission, good for Friday and Saturday.

Mention this ad and get 1/2 off. • 509-287-2305

I heard about this show from my friend Lisa who I meet at shows around Washington. She has done this show several times, and I love to do something different to mix it up once in a while.

I lived in Moscow, Idaho for a couple of years about 30 years ago. We were there while my husband was finishing his degree in Architecture, at the University of Idaho, which is just a hop, skip and a jump from Pullman, Washington.

I'm looking forward to seeing the changes that have come in the past 3 decades to this area.

If you are anywhere near, come by and say hi! If you know of any great places I should see while I am in the area, let me know! Naturally Dave the driver loves nothing better than a side trip, especially driving the rv pulling a trailer...

Monday, March 23, 2009


At last the wait is over...
Meet Miss Delilah Hope

How sweet is she...

Born March 22, 8lbs 10oz

This next picture is the most perfect picture, it tells the whole story for me.

The joy that big sister feels as she meets her baby sister for the first time.

The immediate love that mom feels for the newest baby, yet the lasting love and devotion to her first baby that is no way compromised by the birth of another, only multiplied.

Then of course if you are noticing, the yellow sweater belongs to Papa, standing back just a bit, but always ready to step up and support if needed.

Goodness sakes this may be the image of the circle of love that surrounds a family.

All of a sudden the baby you left at home has now grown into the big girl.

It worked the same for my boys too.

I just want to know where the pictures are of the older boys jumping on the bed, spilling the water, and causing general mayhem in the hospital?? Do girls not do that???

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Many Friends

After a quick nap, and a Dave delivered dinner, I'm feeling ready to rejoin the land of the living. It might not have been one of my better ideas to rearrange and organize the shop/studio/storage unit before the 4 Friends Sale... It has been said (more than once) that I have a lot of junk, stuff. I am ready to admit that is true, luckily its all good stuff...But that is still a lot of treasures to shuffle. One day I will figure this all out and I will have to get a new hobby or something to use up all the extra time I will have.
It wouldn't matter how much time I had there would still never be time enough to get everything done that I would want before a show. So, last night we (the four friends and a couple of their helpers) had a little preshow tour. We met at Cindy's, then a quick stop here, another stop at Diane's, and finishing up at Martha's. I couldn't find my camera before I left, well... the truth is, I couldn't find my purse, good thing I got organized before the show... But I know if you go to their blogs, they will have some great photos and you will agree it is all pure...

I am so thankful for Isabel, she rearranged her schedule at the last minute to come to my rescue when my original plan went askew, and I needed some help with check out. I thought for awhile it was going to be one of the boys around here working with me. (Yikes, how sad would it be to have to chain one of them to the check out counter) Luckily I had a willing, and able helper and we had a great time visiting with everyone. It is always fun to see people we have come to know through our blogs and other shows we have done.

I'm glad to see spring in the Northwest, and I'm looking forward to this coming week as it is Spring vacation and Sam and I will find something fun to keep us busy.
He manages to keep me laughing. One night this week while I was working in the shop, he called my cell phone from the house phone, which in itself is funny because the shop is just outside the back door. He wanted to know if we could order a pizza for dinner. I told him to ask his dad, (after all I was busy getting organized,) He wanted to know where the phone number was and I told him if it wasn't on the refrigerator Dad could look it up in the phone book. A few minutes later he called me again to tell me he ordered the pizza. I wanted to know what he had said. He told me he said, I would like to order a large peperoni pizza, and I apologize that I am not a human, I am a child.

Monday, March 16, 2009

4 Friends...

That's the sale not the number of actual friends I hope to see! I'm getting excited and between the rest of the things that seem to take most of my time I am busy busy getting things ready for this Saturday! How did it get here so fast? I will get back to you on that when I figure it out!

I enlisted the help of Dave and Tyson yesterday to get some semblance of order in the shop and things are starting to look up around here! I'm finding all kinds of treasures that I forgot I had!
I hope you can make time to come out and see what we all have in store for you!
The sale will be held at each of our 4 locations from 10 am to 4 pm. We hope that you will invite your friends to come along and make it a day of shopping and fun!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Sister's Sharing, Baby Love

Do you remember last summer when I shared that these 2 sisters were going to have babies within a few weeks of each other? Then later I had to let you know that Livy (the one on the right) had a miscarriage? Well, today is Brynne's due date, she had to stay home in Michigan. Livy was in town on business and as she is expecting again, and due the first of June we took the opportunity to have a baby shower for her today.

Little Sister Gracie

Little Sister Emily

Missing the other sister Brynne.

I love any excuse to be with my sisters.
Of course there were also friends there, but the highlight had to be sweet baby Jack.

He is 5 months old now!

This guy is all smiles!

If this isn't the cutest baby I have ever seen! What an absolute doll! He was so happy to be at the baby party! Everyone had a turn holding and kissing this sweetie and all he could do is smile at us!

Unlike the first time we saw him and he was a little overwhelmed!

Align CenterSometimes it takes a little getting use to all the excitement!

Once again I had a last minute Great Idea! So very early this morning...

I wanted to make Livy a bib to go with the gift card, since she will be hauling her presents back to Texas on the airplane. But since she is having a boy this would never do..., but as a pattern?

Not as if I don't have tubs and tubs of fabric...but what if I made it out of a feed sack??

And it just fit!

A special cake for the new little star.

I had told Toni about these great cake balls that I had... she and Emily found the recipe and made these using Red Velvet Cake

Livy's mom saved this quilt, it was given to Livy when she was born, by the teachers that taught with her dad. Livy later went to the same school and recognized many of the names. It was a very special surprise.

This was a new one to me...

And to think I had 4 baby boys and never knew??